By Don Nelson
Liz Johnson has been named interim executive director of the Methow Valley Chamber Music Festival, which will return with a full schedule next year after being cancelled in 2014 because of the summer’s fires.
“We’re going to come back full force,” Johnson said.
Johnson and her husband, Howie, own the Signal Hill Ranch, between Twisp and Winthrop, where the festival is staged.
The 2015 festival will be from July 25-Aug. 1 and will feature most of the same performers who were scheduled to appear this year, Johnson said. Some of the performers even refused to accept cancellation fees, she said.
Johnson said that many people who had purchased tickets for this year’s event chose to donate the prepaid money to the festival rather than accept a refund.
Because of that generosity, Johnson said, the festival is in good financial shape.
The festival will sponsor a Valentine’s Day concert next Feb. 14 at The Merc Playhouse in Twisp, featuring one of Canada’s finest violinists, Jasper Wood, to lead piano quartets by Antonin Dvorak and Joaquin Turina. Joining Wood will be Tim Christie on viola, plus the festival’s artistic director, Kevin Krentz on cello, and Allan Dameron, pianist and conductor of the Pacific Northwest Ballet.
Tickets are $20 and can be ordered at the festival’s website, www.methowmusicfestival.org. The concert begins at 7 p.m.
Johnson said the festival will continue to look for a permanent executive director. Meanwhile, she said, “I’m thrilled to be working with the music festival in this capacity.”